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[Album & MV Review] KNK - 'Awake'

By eric_r_wirsing   Thursday, June 23, 2016   13,040   1,080   20



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Track List:

1. Gone
2. Back Again
3. I Remember
4. Let Me Try
5. Day N Night
6. Confession
7. Back Again (Inst.)
8. How Are You Today (Inst.)

The rookie boy band KNK is 'back again' with a new mini-album. This comes right on the heels of their last digital single "I Remember." Rather than a collection of singles, their first mini-album features all-new tracks (with the exception of "Gone" and "I Remember").

"Gone" is a pretty effective intro track, and I like the concept (gone, then back again). Both this one and "Back Again" share similar beginnings, though the latter goes to a completely different place. I like how it leads into the title track, and it's short like some of the most dramatic goodbyes.

The title track is the appropriately-named "Back Again." It's an okay piece of dance, but its pretty low-key. The best parts are the raps, but otherwise it sounds subdued, like they were holding back. There's a few stylistic touches where the lead reaches deeper, but overall it's just "meh." The same problems plague "Day N Night." It's meant to be fun, light, and danceable, but it just lacks that essential spark that could make it an otherwise successful song. It's kind of by the numbers. I don't know -- maybe they were going for that, but it doesn't mean I have to reward them for that.

They transition to soft pop, giving us two such tunes in a row. They're noticeably better at this than dance, almost as if they prefer this style. "I Remember" and "Let Me Try" are the ones I'm talking about. The first is a really pleasant listen, and they seem more emotional here, and there are some smooth harmonies that are soothing. "Let Me Try" is sort of a ballad hybrid, and I like some of the special effects on this track that aren't strictly music. There's some touching moments in this song. The feels seem pretty authentic, which is what you need. They did an awesome job on these two tunes.

"Confession" is the last song, again kind giving off that soft pop vibe. The emotional falsetto is worked to good effect, giving some heft to it. There's a nice beat that reminds us we're not in ballad territory. It's a leisurely foray, peppered with occasional longing in the vocals. This one resonated a little deeper with me than much of the others.

The essential problem is that there's no surprises here, other than the lack of a ballad; but they don't need it, since most of the disc is given over to soft songs. It's quiet and safe, and that might be my issue -- if the songs are bland, why release them? As I said, it might be better for them to concentrate on soft pop, as it's what they seem best at.


Some bands rip off other band's concepts, but KNK ripped off everyone's concept -- and not in a good way. They start off dancing in a box while lights are shone on them. Even when they switch locations, it's still a confined space -- with blinking lights and dancing. There were some nice touches, symbolic scenes that showed how the relationship wasn't working, but they were few and far between.

They can almost be forgiven for the cheapness because the dancing was pretty awesome. But almost only counts in horseshoes and hand-grenades. That's one good thing I can say is that some of the lighting and such created a dramatic mood for some of the moves. They were well-positioned and in sync.

One of the cool parts.

It's just it is hard to look past the budget and set design for this. I'm sure they did their best, but it still ended up being campy, like a parody of boy band MVs. I almost wish that it was.


MV Relevance..........8
MV Production.........5
MV Concept.............5

Album Production...6
Album Concept........7


SEE ALSO: 4 Events that demanded change in the Korean entertainment industry


  1. KNK
  2. awake

Sceenshot Friday, June 24, 2016

You must be outta your god damn mind, this way better than the other reviews that got higher scores.

mydeerlikesbacon Friday, June 24, 2016

I'm trying to restrain myself but I really couldn't stand this point: 'if the songs are bland, why release them?' Really, now. What is wrong with releasing them? Some people enjoy that type of music. By saying they shouldn't release this means that you don't mind depriving some others of music of their choice just because you don't want it appealing, and that's selfish. Also, with that kind of phrasing, what's the difference between that and saying somebody shouldn't live just because they are having a boring lifestyle?

Luxorris Friday, June 24, 2016

Yeyeyeyeye.... They should buy songs form America and film there (which have no connection with Kpoop) like Shitfanny then this would be great comeback, right?

ASTRO_FAN Friday, June 24, 2016

There's no point in changing a critic's opinion, however, I found this review somewhat unprofessional.  Using words, such as, "meh" is not the correct term used to describe something that you feel is lacking. I'm glad you handed out a harsh review instead of simply saying they were lacking, but telling them not to release this album because they were playing safe is not a considerable reason. Are you asking them to do a loud poppy song that may not fit their style? And hopefully my final complaint, is the fact you claim they were ripping off of other groups for their MV. I do agree with you on the fact that, it is commonly used, but it may have to deal with concept of the MV itself. For example, the reason they were dancing and shooting the MV in such a confined space may be because 'Back Again' could possibly say going back to the days when that setting was commonly used, or they want to go back to better days but they're stuck in this confined space, etc. Again, I am in no position to change anyone's opinion, and I hope no one takes offense from my comment.

callmeashy Friday, June 24, 2016

For me the reason I really like them is because of their personalities and variety talent, their music is just icing on the cake^^

federick Thursday, June 23, 2016

nonsense review

Cat_Lessard Thursday, June 23, 2016

I agree and disagree with you. Now I am a Tinkerbell and have been since they debuted. Yes, their Back Again music video was like other groups concepts but everyone has done stuff like that before. I personally think KNK did it better than the other groups but I am a little biased obviously. Though, I think all of the songs are pretty fantastic and really can't find anything wrong with any of them.

lisa08 Thursday, June 23, 2016

6.5.... okkkkkkk bye lol

ladamenoire Thursday, June 23, 2016

I really couldn't disagree with you more. There's "ripping shit off" and then there's nostalgia. The vid evoked a lot of SS501, Super Junior style feelings for me, but you wrote that off as stale. As always, reviews are just one person's reviews, but I really think you missed the mark here.

iisstf28 Thursday, June 23, 2016

While this comeback was pretty safe and a bit too common, I can see KNK getting bigger. They should really prove new things and get out there and find their own colors and styles, they are talented and have already gran some attention, they could really become big!

iisstf28 Thursday, June 23, 2016


AmyLeeSG iisstf28 Friday, June 24, 2016

I like your comment

iisstf28 AmyLeeSG Friday, June 24, 2016

Thanks! I really like KNK and see alot of potential in them!

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